Rudy Giuliani, a target in Atlanta, investigates Trump 2020 election subversion plan, to appear before grand jury

The indication that he is a target of the investigation by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis marked an escalation of the investigation and raises questions about Trump’s criminal exposure in the investigation. Willis’s office has also informed 16 Trump support agents who were fraudulently presented as presidential elections in 2020 that they are the target of its investigation, but the focus on Giuliani puts the investigation into Trump’s inner circle.

Bob Costello, an attorney for Giuliani, confirmed to CNN earlier this week that Giuliani will appear on Wednesday before the special grand jury convened for the investigation, but Costello indicated the former New York City mayor would not necessarily respond to the questions. that were given to him.

“If they want to play hardball, we know how to play hardball,” Costello said.

Costello declined to say whether Giuliani would invoke his Fifth Amendment right to self-incriminate, but suggested Giuliani would not answer questions about his communications with Trump.

“If you think he’s going to talk to you about conversations he had with his client, you’re delusional,” Costello said. Everything, he says, “depends on the questions they ask.”

Other witnesses who have appeared before the grand jury have been asked to testify to Giuliani’s participation in hearings and meetings with Georgian lawmakers in 2020, where Giuliani made false claims about voter fraud.

Among the possible crimes Willis investigates is making false statements to state and local government agencies, as well as instigating voter fraud and conspiracy.

Investigators’ interest in Giuliani’s promotion of electoral fraud to lawmakers

Of interest to the Atlanta investigators are hearings before Georgian lawmakers where Giuliani and other Trump allies promoted conspiracy theories about alleged 2020 election fraud. At a Georgia Senate subcommittee hearing on Dec. 3, 2020, Giuliani played heavily edited video of election workers in Fulton County, and he urged lawmakers to nominate a list of pro-Trump voters without charge. to keep track of the statewide results showing that Joe Biden had won. He also appeared virtually before a Georgia House committee to discuss alleged election irregularities on December 10, 2020.

Giuliani and other Trump allies appeared at another hearing before Georgian lawmakers on Dec. 30, 2020, where he reiterated false claims that the state’s election had been plagued by fraud.

His allegations have been debunked by numerous state and federal officials. Among those flinching were Trump-appointed officials, including former Atlanta attorney Byung “Bjay” Pak, who confirmed to the U.S. House on Jan. 6, 2021 that the vote-fraud allegations put forward by Giuliani and others had been investigated. by federal authorities and turned out to be untrue.

Democratic lawmakers who testified before the Fulton County Grand Jury were asked to share their experience attending those hearings, with investigators focusing on the unusual way the hearings had come together, lawmakers’ impressions of the information was shared and the suggestion that lawmakers are pursuing an alternative slate of voters.

Giuliani called Willis’s investigation “a political stunt” and a sign that “we are starting to live in a fascist state.”

“As I recall, I appeared in Georgia as a lawyer for Donald J. Trump, so I am being prosecuted for what I did as a lawyer,” he said on his podcast Monday.

Multiple Investigations into Trump’s Election Reversal Schemes

For months, the public activity of the Fulton County probe made it seem like the main legal risk for Trump and his inner circle was to use their gambits to undo his 2020 defeat. It has only recently become clear that the US Department of Justice is also investigating the election-related behavior of Trump allies in 2020, but the goals of that investigation are unknown.

Giuliani will appear before the Fulton County grand jury on Wednesday after being subpoenaed in July. Because he failed to appear at a New York hearing to challenge the subpoena, the New York judge ordered him to testify. Giuliani’s other attempts to ditch the appearance — including alleging recent heart surgery prevented him from traveling — were unsuccessful.

Other attorneys representing Trump in the 2020 election have also sought to challenge subpoenas for testimony before the Fulton County grand jury.

CNN’s Sara Murray, Jason Morris and Gloria Borger contributed to this report.

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